By Tenzin Dharpo
DHARAMSHALA, June 7: Chinese government has trained Tibetan monks and nuns to become mediums of its policies and political determination by giving a three-day training workshop in occupied Tibet’s Lhasa city earlier this month.
China mouthpiece Global Times
reported citing Tibet.cn on June 4 that “Buddhist facilitators” are trained to be “reliable in politics and take a clear-cut and firm stance” apart from being “profound in religious knowledge, be convincing in morality and play an active role at critical moments”. Also adding that the monks and nuns should have firm political mission to educate fellow monastics.
While there is no disclosure on the number of participants in the training, Tibet Daily
reported in 2017 that candidates are chosen based on the firmness of their political stance and competence, from Party cadres, grassroots farmers or herders, teachers, temple officials and patriotic religious personnel.
"Buddhist temples play a key role in Tibet's stability. The facilitators spread the latest religious and political policies and spirit from the central government to monks and nuns, leading them to advocate socialist development with Chinese characteristics," Xiong Kunxin, a professor at Beijing's Minzu University of China, told the Global Times
China’s apparent attempt to contain resistance in occupied Tibet through the initiative is reflected clearly in the official report by Tibet Daily
. It stated, "Tibet is the key to national security and the frontline of the anti-secession struggle. The report of the 19th National Congress calls for the acceleration of border area development and to ensure its security."
The same report also cited Zhu Xiaoming, former Party chief of the China Tibetology Research Center as saying that facilitators are usually active or young monks and nuns in temples willing to learn and share with others.
The three-day training in Lhasa sits squarely into the larger designs of the Chinese government to officially make the monastic community a channel to propagate its political influence in Tibet. After the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 2017, 7000 party cadres were sent to temples to preach the spirit of the 19th CPC National Congress among Buddhist monks, nuns, students and farmers, Tibet Daily